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Retina. 2009 Jul-Aug;29(7):988-93. doi: 10.1097/IAE.0b013e3181ae7113.

Spectral domain optical coherence tomography characteristics of cuticular drusen.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida 33136, USA.



To evaluate the appearance of cuticular drusen with spectral domain optical coherence tomography.


Eyes of patients with cuticular drusen were imaged using a prototype spectral domain optical coherence tomography instrument with 5-microm axial resolution. Thickness maps were obtained after automated segmentation of the internal limiting membrane and retinal pigment epithelium layers using a proprietary algorithm. The volume of subretinal fluid (SRF) was calculated using a manual segmentation technique that involved drawing boundaries around the SRF. The repeatability of these measurements was tested by comparing the volume measurements from multiple scans performed on the same day in four eyes of three patients.


Sixteen eyes from eight patients with cuticular drusen were scanned. Areas of decreased retinal thickness overlying drusen were best visualized using the three-dimensional retinal thickness map. The distribution and sawtooth pattern of cuticular drusen were best visualized using three-dimensional retinal pigment epithelium segmentation. Of the 16 eyes, 13 had SRF within the macula. In the eyes with macular SRF, characteristic excrescences were present along the outer retina and attenuation of the photoreceptor inner and outer segment boundary were observed in many areas. In areas where the retina was detached, the retinal pigment epithelium-Bruch's membrane complex appeared nodular or attenuated. The volumetric measurements of the SRF were performed using a manual segmentation with a 1.11% mean difference between repeated measurements on the same day (range, 0.47-1.68%; standard deviation, 0.55%).


The sawtooth pattern of drusen and the presence of excrescences along the detached outer retina are characteristic features of cuticular drusen that should be helpful in confirming the diagnosis of this condition. The volumetric analysis of the SRF is repeatable and may be useful in following the clinical course of these patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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